Taiwan’s central bank on Thursday announced a 0.25% interest rate cut in a bid to ease monetary policy in the country.

Coming just days after a cut by the US Federal Reserve, the cut is largely in line with efforts by central banks around the world to ease the effects on national economies caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.

The US on Sunday dropped its rate a full percentage point to zero to help combat worries caused by the crisis less than two weeks after an earlier cut of 0.5 percentage points.

The cut will come into effect this morning and will take the central bank’s main discount rate down to its lowest ever level of 1.125 percentage points, a number not seen since 2009, during the so-called global credit crunch.

Prior to yesterday’s meeting, Taiwan’s interest rates had remained unchanged for almost four years.

A day earlier, Taiwan’s Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics said the national economy could increase by 2% by the end of the year.

Last November, initial forecasts for 2020, had the economy growing by 2.72%, a figure later dropped to 2.37% just after the virus started to take hold in February.

In related news, earlier in the week Taiwan entered bear market territory for the first time in five years on the back of huge withdrawals by foreign investors.



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